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Graphisoft public roadmap - Follow-up conversation

Gordana Radonic
Community Manager
Community Manager

Dear Community, 

 

We're excited to have published our roadmap!

We'd love to hear your thoughts and questions. Please feel free to use this thread for discussion.

 

Graphisoft Insights announcement: https://community.graphisoft.com/t5/Graphisoft-Insights/Graphisoft-public-roadmap/ba-p/375281

 

Public roadmap on the Graphisoft website.

 

Thank you.

Gordana Radonić

Community Manager

316 REPLIES 316

Hi Trevor,

I appreciate that my reply could sound like schmoozing (technical term 🙂 ), but we are seriously looking into this. You are right, I have been around GS forums for donkey years now and that's precisely why I want to get this sorted. It has been and (unfortunately) it still is a pain in the neck that I have experienced as a customer as well as GS employee. The solution is possible but it's complex, so it takes a time, resources and money that I have to take care of... there are so many other projects that need GS's attention... as you can imagine. Anyway, I share your frustration and take your reply as an encouragement to get it fixed in a timely manner. I will keep this community posted with any developments / milestones achieved.

And just a note, I am not going to comment on the speed of product development as I am not really in the position to do so.  

 

Cheerio,

::rk

Thanks for the response Rob. I can but wish you well in your endeavour.

 

Apple iMac Intel i9 / macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds.. if they work)

It's been six months plus now... Not one thing regarding the interactivity of the roadmap has changed since its inception. Someone could literally make a Notion page in one day that would be more useful than what is there now. Some feedback is better than none.

Graphisoft simply does not want our input there... period. Anyone reading this forum can plainly see the biggest wish/concern regarding future development is to shift the focus back to architectural tools; both new and enhancing/fixing poorly implemented ones (stair/rail). Input to the roadmap from the user base would upset the apple cart with their focus on MEP/S.

We are not blind as to what's going on.

I'll say it again... Six months with "no" development at all.

Rex Maximilian, Honolulu, USA - www.rexmaximilian.com
ArchiCAD 27 (user since 3.4, 1991)
16" MacBook Pro; M1 Max (2021), 32GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, 32-Core GPU
Apple Vision Pro w/ BIMx
Creator of the Maximilian ArchiCAD Template System
Botonis
Advisor

This is from a discussion I had with Istvan Toth from Cigraph a couple of years ago....:

 

He said:

"Graphisoft has a test, where they see as result of the test how much the Architect loves ArchiCAD. We developed a test where we controlled the professional knowledge of the software, and fond out that most users knew ArchiCAD for only 20-25%, but where convinced to know it very well, and estimated to get to 80-90% on the tests."

 

Archicad is a software which has to fulfill the wishes of thousands of users trying to design different things, with different steps, and different architectural perspective. A bug is not always a bug (with some exceptions" but a conflict to the way the software thinks. A workaround is not just a way to overcome a theoritical bug but the correct way to translate the software process. For me the basic question is "Can I be more creative with Archicad or not?", "Am I the one who sets the Architectural Creativity Level or the software?".

What I can do is to optimize Archicad as a tool and get the most of it based on my Architectural expression. And then this tool becomes an instrument.

Nobody cared if Mozart played with an old, piano......................Only the music mattered. (and Archicad is not an old piano!!)

Botonis Botonakis
Civil Engineer, Enviromental Design MSc., BIM Manager for BS ArhitectsVR
Company or personal website
Archicad 27. Windows 11. Intel Xeon 2699x2,64 GB RAM, Nvidia 3080Ti. 2 Monitors.

True and that’s why I try and learn something new to use everyday that I work with the software. It changes from year to year and it can be hard to keep up with. I don’t need to use all the parts of the program in my line of business. Big teams on big projects need to use much more of the capabilities and need to be skilled in many more areas of the program. They need more training as well. They also need to learn how to use other free form modelling applications and how to integrate them with Archicad. Musical instruments however is another big story.

AC8.1 - AC27 ARM AUS + CI Tools
Apple Mac Studio M1 Max Chip 10C CPU
24C GPU 7.8TF 32GB RAM OS Ventura
  • IIRC on that test the first issue is that a lot of questions are in Hunglish which are a pain to parse and a lot of users are not native english speakers which might skew the numbers to US, AUS, UK.
  • Second point is that if the software is harder/difficult to learn and use then obviously users can only learn a fraction of the possible potential. Think how long it took you to learn how to use the new Stair tool.
  • Third. Nobody cared what Mozart use to play since nobody could do what Mozart was able to do, the same with architecture. I don't get paid for using AC nor any other software. So software has to help me produce. I still enjoy doing CDs by hand but they are not practical so cannot use them as deliverables. Buying the same piano or a better piano than Mozart will not make me equal to him no matter how hard I try. And thinking that the piano builder is the creative one (like GS sometimes promotes itself) is nuts. Same mistake as to promote oneself as "We are the piano that Mozart uses, so we are the better piano…" as if Mozart couldn't pick another.
  • Creativity has nothing to do with the software, as a 20+ year professor I have to constantly remind students that learning any CAD package will not make them better designers. Thinking about Architecture and problem solving will and for that you don't need any computer.
  • Is AC a tool for architects or for BIM Managers?

---

AC is a production tool and the main target should be to make it as capable as it could be while making it as easy to learn as possible. If becoming and expert in Revit takes 6 months then AC should target 3 months at a minimum. Workarounds make it more difficult to learn and to remember that particular solution and, in theory, having/saving "Favorites" is counter productive since it doesn't let the user learn how to use that particular tool.

 

Since R08 I have seen how AC has become more difficult to teach with each new release and I am at the point with my students were the first classes are on how to simplify AC by removing layes, BMats, etc. This year I brought back the old Stair objects since most students cannot and do not have the time to waste learning how to use the current stair tool.

---

Before Revit existed AC was the most productive software compared to Architectural Desktop (easier to use) and regular CAD (faster to create and edit drawings).

This is not the case at this time. AC has shifted to be a tool for specialists.

---

The target should be for AC to become the "SketchUp" of the BIM world. The ideal scenario is for an architect who has "construction" experience should be able to pick AC and produce a schematic set of plans (or recreate one) without external help.

  • If you need to hire a BIM Manager for a 3 person office then GS lost. If you need a BIM Manager in addition to the Production Manager (Architect) you definitively lost. BIM Managers should be a luxury not a requirement.
  • If a new user needs 4 weeks of training to start using AC, then GS lost.
  • If you need workarounds to do something then that is an optimization target.

---

AC can still do this since previous (20+ years ago) decisions have not been removed and they were designed with hardware limitations and by users who valued simplicity. Some examples are: Layer Manager( before the removal of the selection buttons in 26), Organizer, Original Attribute Manager. Examples that need a lot of work are: Stairs, Railings, MEP.

---

The easiest solution I can see is to define Work Environments for:

  1. New users: This should as simple as possible for a new user to produce a CD set
  2. Regular users: Workflow WE were due to limitations you need more experience with AC in order to produce the CD set more efficiently. GO's and Design Options belong here.
  3. BIM Manager mode: Main purpose is not to be used for production but to specifically tailor AC to that particular office. This should be optional. Templates, Attribute Manger and Favorites Creation should be here.

---

Sorry for the rant but GS still keeps pushing me to change piano makers and I prefer not to.

Eduardo Rolón AIA NCARB
AC27 US/INT -> AC08

Macbook Pro M1 Max 64GB ram, OS X 10.XX latest
another Moderator

Well explained @Eduardo Rolon, no need to be sorry either. You nailed it with your unique perspective and insight as an AC teacher.

 

I don’t think in Piano’s but in guitars, for me Fender fits my hand perfectly and some Gibsons and Gretsch guitars do as well. No matter how good my guitar is, if I am not a good player it will not sound good. 

To tell you the truth I don’t use GO’s because creating the rules confuse me. I am happy with MVO’s and layer manipulation. I love the new DG’s because of my first software being CA.

 

You do not need to use every scale or mode to be a good musician.

 

However using stairs and railings are a must to learn, no matter how difficult they are to use at present in AC. The problem is that when a stair case becomes more complicated in design you need a more complicated stair tool to get what you want.

 

The learning curve of jumping from this CAD to other CAD can keep you loyal to the one you learned at first.

 

Older Archicad was not as complicated as the New Archicad is these days. Everything is gearing towards 3D CD’s and not the old 2D CD’s and that makes things more complex before building actually takes place. MEP is all 3D now so we have to live with change.

AC8.1 - AC27 ARM AUS + CI Tools
Apple Mac Studio M1 Max Chip 10C CPU
24C GPU 7.8TF 32GB RAM OS Ventura

@mthd wrote:

Older Archicad was not as complicated as the New Archicad is these days. Everything is gearing towards 3D CD’s and not the old 2D CD’s and that makes things more complex before building actually takes place. MEP is all 3D now so we have to live with change.


Just to carry on the piano metaphor, there's no point in inviting Mozart to the party if the piano is out of tune and half the keys don't work.

 

You have kind of hit on the problem there @mthd. AC has at its core some absolutely brilliant 3D coding and I fully commend those who are tasked with making it work. Unfortunately as AC has become increasingly powerful on the modelling front the ability to extract and document that information has fallen behind. Hardware limitations of 10 years ago are very different to now and as a consequence we are all looking to deliver more documents from our models, not only for the wow factor, but also the increasingly complex process of demonstrating legislative compliance with 2D documentation.

 

So where has Graphisoft dropped the ball?

Well, you could start with the Project Map, the inability to create cloneable sub-folders means you have a choice of having multiple long View Map lists of irrelevant drawings or abandoning the cloning option.

Views should be controlled by Styles not left with loads of individually settings to be checked, copied, transferred between Project Map views.

Why do we need two different elevations in the project map simply because one has shadows and the other doesn't?

You can make a staggered section / elevation views, but you can't do that for plans?

Most View Map views are unique for documenting, but the Story / Plan views we have to juggle layers to avoid conflicting annotations between different layouts. (I also think this directly contributes to the vanishing dimension issue).

The detailing tool is a law unto itself and completely destroys the live section & BIM data workflow.

Have you tried dimensioning an inclined axonometric 3D document recently?

There is no simple workflow to extract a component and create a set of orthogonal 1st/3rd angle projections; instancing would help, but we've only been waiting 20 years for that one. 

We are invited to add annotations to our Schedule Views, but all those annotations will be lost without warning if you make the wrong decision when updating the Schedule. This is the kind of thing that only goes wrong once, because you quickly learn to find a different way to do the job that doesn't hit your profit margin.

 

So regardless of your discipline or the scale of projects there is plenty to be done at the core of AC if its to have a future. Perhaps @Marton Kiss is following this thread as well, in which case there may be some hope, but there again all these fundamentals may just fall into the "really difficult" or "possibly coming soon" development zones.

Apple iMac Intel i9 / macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds.. if they work)

@DGSketcher wrote: "So where has Graphisoft dropped the ball?"

I'll tell you this; back in the 90s when we would demo ArchiCAD to potential buyers, the motto we would shout from the rooftops was "This software was made by architects, for architects." Since then the attrition of people with a design or architectural background from the Graphisoft offices caused the loss of direction that was so pinpointed before. Industry educated personnel were replaced with people with no architectural background.

Also, for several years when we would have our resellers' meeting (both national and international), we'd have an audience with key departments where R&D and policy makers could hear from those of us in the trenches who KNEW what users wanted; who KNEW what prospective clients wanted that would influence their purchase and use of ArchiCAD.

That has been lost now. Now they concentrate on a few large clients and -- as seen with their ineffective roadmap -- are ignoring the needs and wants from the masses (their core user base).

It isn't sustainable. With the increase of the costs associated to use and stay current with the software, along with the R.O.I. that we no longer 
have, they'll soon price themselves out of their core market, and as @Eduardo Rolon suggested, it'll become a specialty software.

We all should at least take a Revit course for insurance.

Rex Maximilian, Honolulu, USA - www.rexmaximilian.com
ArchiCAD 27 (user since 3.4, 1991)
16" MacBook Pro; M1 Max (2021), 32GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, 32-Core GPU
Apple Vision Pro w/ BIMx
Creator of the Maximilian ArchiCAD Template System

Hi Trevor,

 

I appreciate your comments and they are (unfortunately) still valid. I guess I may have complained about some of those 20-odd years ago when I used to be a GS's customer. We know as you know that we need to resolve a lot of stuff somehow, but calling upon Marton every time you would like to bring it to our attention will not change things. He is not Gandalf with his staff and just claim "you shall have new detailing tool!" The real world does not work like that. Having said that, GS have lots of clever people who do follow posts on this forum and make notes. 

 

Cheers

Rob

::rk

Hi Rob, just the basic fact you took the time and trouble to respond offers some hope here on the forum. I have seen the reasons for not engaging, but to be honest much of the frustration aired here is simply down to that vacuum of engagement, kind of "Here's your software with all its problems, now sort out how to get round the problems yourselves". I tagged Marton simply to remind him that there are plenty of things that urgently need fixing at the core of AC without wasting resources on ill-conceived headline grabbing experimental new features. Marton may not be Gandalf, but Graphisoft are increasingly presenting as the Dwarves of Erebor if you want a LotR / Hobbit reference.

 

Seriously, I appreciate there is no magic wand, but you may find the frustration and animosity aired in this forum might ease if there was greater reassurance offered on what is being delivered and when; provided there was some alignment with real user need. To use your own reference, I would lay odds on that more people would have need for an effective detailing tool than any need of experimental Design Guides or Physical Based Rendering. An updated detail tool wouldn't even be a major deviation from the existing Section coding, so what's the problem, why are all our requested tool fixes / updates all represented as too difficult to deliver? 

 

Making notes isn't the solution, delivering software we all WANT to use should be your primary objective.

Apple iMac Intel i9 / macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds.. if they work)

...replying to both of you (Trevor and Rex) as there is kind of an overlap. The truth is that we are overwhelmed by the amount of information we can collect from our users but we cannot efficiently process. As an example - I am not sure if you have noticed but we migrated DACH (Germany/Austria/Switzerland-German speaking) forum to our community... roughly 12K users with different priorities and demands etc etc. Back in the day, GS was much smaller, AC was much simpler, our user base was much smaller and feature expectations were much lower. That's fine but we are in a different environment now. I agree that we need some automation tools to make it more transparent and perhaps more agile. I am personally looking into ways how to handle this kind of information flood through e.g. AI-driven communities analysis, new Wishlist handling system, obviously multi-language issues (huge headache) etc... patience my lords.

::rk

To me this kind of focus on information is a telltale sign of a company without a clear vision (or a clue) and I would say that it is echoed in a lot of the surveys and feedback threads initiated by GS. It also lines up with the fact that for all the presentations we have seen lately - none has been with focus on how AC is going to enable and support the fundamental work of the designer but rather about how the designer will have to adapt to a new future. It's all about interdisciplinary teamwork, cloud services and AI - nothing about generic information entities, generic geometry modelling, identity over change and alternative designs, instancing, typing, dynamic arrays, parametricity, criteria based visibility, hierarchical data management and every other concept that is a fundamental part of how designerns think about buildings and are becoming ubiquitous in CAD/BIM softwares but for some reason are remain absent in AC (some seemingly by ignorance). So instead of worrying about information gathering I would recommend that GS come up with a vision for how AC should aid the fundamental work of the designer and present it to the users which then can decide if it is a vision worth investing in.

Ahhh paralisys by analisis: My favorite reason for procrastination. 

 

I agree with @thesleepofreason that there doesnt seem to be any kind of coherent vision for what they are doing right now. I actually had the chance to confirm it when i asked them for some promotional materials for my engineers "ok GS, you want our engineers to use archicad? Give us some tools and videos to show them the benefits".  The answer was so beffluding that im still digesting it, as in "we dont have any material". I really didnt expect that.

 

You can ask your entire user base what they want or need. You can cross-analize all the results with some fancy statitical methods. You can look at what the competition is doing.  At some point someone has to have the minerals to say "lets do this! This is the way to go".

 

That is one of the reasons i chose Archicad in the first place, because it went against the current. And for us, choosing Archicad in a revit saturated market is definetely swimming against the current.  

 

So seeing them chasing Revit now is dissapointing to say the least.  I don't want to use revit. nor chief architect, nor vectoworks, nor that thing frank gehry and his minions use.  I want to use archicad.

I want to support and swim along a company that goes against all odds, like they did from the very beginning, importing macs behind the curtain wall.  If they are chasing revit i'd better use the real thing instead of some wannabe with no vision.

 

Let revit be revit. They and their users have their own problems. let'em solve them, We have our own.

 

 

But this is the essence of the problem, there seems to be an inordinate amount of interest in analysing feature expectations, meanwhile the basic functionality of AC which operates the same regardless of language is ignored year after year. Can GS not establish a strategy that has a rolling programme of tool review and improvement, not new "features", just basic improvements to simplify and improve day-to-day working?

 

The much needed improvements don't need analysed they need actioned and delivered on a frequent and regular basis e.g. monthly or quarterly. The point is you could pick any tool and improve its usability and I bet there is no shortage of low hanging fruit in the Wishlist that could be delivered quickly without much effort. It just needs someone to have the courage to say let's start here and clear these easy wish / bugs by the end of the month and let users know what's coming & when.

Apple iMac Intel i9 / macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds.. if they work)

Hi Rob,

We all appreciate you being here and interacting with use users as a GS representative. Since you are the only one, please don’t take our comments personally when we may say “you” when we really are referring to GS in a general way. But we really feel strong about needing to redirect and awaken GS to its “ignorance” or apparent apathy towards its user base. We feel strongly about the high value of Archicad and are getting angry because we see a great app getting slowly weaker because those steering the ship clearly do mot have the vision the original developers had from 1984 to 2009. Its the second generation that does not have the same value and purpose. We don’t want to see Archicad fall. There is no good reason for it to fall. I am beginning to think that it is a leadership problem from the very top. 

Todd Oeftger
AC27 Mac MacBook Pro 15", 2019, 2.3 GHz i9, 32GB, Radeon Pro 560X 4GB, 500GB SSD, 32" Samsung Display (2560x1440)

hi rob (I'm from Germany, so I maybe  ound rude and I apologise in advance),

 

like most people here, I'm a long-time user (+25 years). We were socialised with archicad, so to speak, and we always considered it to be the better system - which it was for many years.

 

But we're getting tired of hearing the excuses: we did this, we did that, so we don't get to do the other things. The state of Archicad and Graphisoft is no accident. They were "your" decisions.

 

In Germany, we used to have regular user meetings organised by Graphisoft Germany. These meetings were legendary: we got an insight into the development and direct contact with Graphisoft. There was feedback! And we could understand why Archicad was developed this way and not otherwise. And we were able to criticise the product. Good and bad. It all gave us a feeling of family, a feeling of being part of something. The new management is trying to imitate this through the Insider programme. That doesn't work. A survey is not the same as personal contact. GS is making it clear what it wants from us: our money. On the learning platform, this is even abundantly clear! Honestly - I never thought this would happen: I don't care about the product anymore! Marton celebrates on LinkedIn that Archicad can be seen for just under a second in an M3 advert. Is this the success GS is aiming for?

 

Sketchup was mentioned by name in the M3 presentation, last year Vectorworks made a real appearance. Woohoo, a close second Archicad, but only those who know the software will recognise it.

 

To stay in the language of architects: you are building on an old foundation that does not support the new superstructures. Anyone who has worked with Archicad for any length of time will realise this. The promised advantages cannot be realised. Keyword: access to GDL parameters in lists. A huge construction site. For decades! Only experts know how to do this (IFC translator).

 

AC26 was bad (and still is: imprecise, buggy and sloooowww), AC27 is a disaster and cannot be used. Stop always adding new things on top, make a CONCRETE and IMPLEMENTABLE roadmap and finally start modernising the core of the software and fixing the old bugs. Make a new Archicad for all I care and leave the old one where it is. The messing around must finally stop.

I wouldn’t exactly consign the program to demolition status. Renovation status maybe. They are certainly delegating many tasks out to other apps and granted, steel portal framing could be done better in another app most likely.

 

We have a saying in Australia and is common in most of the English speaking world too. “A Jack of all trades and a master of none”. To be fair what is Archicad a master of ?“Architectural Documentation” to name one. Archicad is highly organized in that area. There are many strength in this Architectural CAD software solution. Yes they can certainly focus on mastering its many Architectural strengths and delegate out MEP and other non direct Architectural tasks out to other apps. Just like we do in our professions.

AC8.1 - AC27 ARM AUS + CI Tools
Apple Mac Studio M1 Max Chip 10C CPU
24C GPU 7.8TF 32GB RAM OS Ventura

I agree with the things written about the former (lovely) Archicad - "environment" here in Germany.

I've liked and still like the atmosphere of events, forum discussions, communication with Graphisoft-salesmen, supporter and so on.

 

But for me it seems also as the "politic", the marketing-strategy the behaving on events…, actually the whole objective of development is heading in a wrong and for me worrying direction. I mean who is supposed to make such statement… but I can't help myself… I also have more and more the impression the the target is more and more to generate money – with wich methods ever – and not to invest in quality.

(I may view… when I read on the German Website you can only get an Archicad Testversion if you place an order automatically after one month testing… something seems to be very wrong…)

 

 

ARCHICAD for Future
______________________________________

archicad versions 8-27 | mac os 13 | win 10

Hi Torben,

I cannot possibly comment on German community and if that is the case indeed, I agree with you that something needs to be done. I personally prefer direct contact, but sometimes it is not possible. E.g. in UK we have restarted our regular Key User Group meetings in-person (in this post-pandemic world), so you'd better get in contact with someone from GSDE...

Re: Insider program - the idea was to expose local users to each other and remove "national silos" we used have before... as well as keep you involved on continuous basis. It would be interesting to know what doesn't work with Insider program in your opinion...

::rk

Hi Rob,

 

there was once a very successful Insider Program. It was called Graphisoft Key Client Conference. There met all the insider from around the world once in a year for three days. There was intensive exchange and real networking.

 

All I get now are surveys. The last one was about how I feel about Graphisoft Learn. Really? 25 Years of experience of planning, modeling and programing GDL and GS asks me about Graphisoft Learn!

 

I learn something new every day and most of what I've learned in the past has come from talking to colleagues. Either at meetings or via the forum. Especially via the forum. GS will never see a single euro that I will spend on GS Learn.

 

I may sound angry, but I'm just disappointed. And I know from many conversations with colleagues that they feel the same way. And when I look here in the forum, I see that I'm not alone. This forum is an important source of information and decision-making for Graphisoft, because this is where the "informed minority" gathers. We are not complaining because Archicad is no longer Archicad, but because there seems to be a worldwide common sense about what Archicad needs. And Graphisoft is ignoring this common sense. 

 

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